Five Ways to Help Your Child During Your Divorce

Through the ups and downs of the divorce process, most parents are acutely aware of how the end of their marriage is impacting their children, but many struggle to productively address the issue. Sometimes it can be difficult to support and reassure your child when you are in the midst of your own emotional battle. In today’s blog post, we’re looking at the top five ways you can help your child during your divorce.

1. Encourage honesty.

Make sure that your child understands he or she is welcome to express any thoughts and ask any questions honestly and openly. Let your child know that they will not be judged in any way, and it is not a burden to you to talk to them about how they are feeling. Showing them that you are open to discussion can make a big difference.

2. Listen.

While you might not always know what the “right” response is when your child is honest with you, the most important thing you can do is listen. Even if you can’t provide answers or solutions, show your child you are listening with an open heart and open mind, and you care. This can help your child feel less alone.

Listening can be more difficult with older children, who sometimes react to their parents’ marital issues with hostility, anger, and blame. Rather than trying to explain yourself or justify your actions, just listen. Do your best to understand your child’s feelings and point of view.

3. Quality time.

Parents should set aside time to have one-on-one time with their child. During this time, it is more important than ever to make your child the priority and be present. Parents should also continue to maintain as much of their child’s regular routine as possible and not put your needs ahead of your childs. Minimizing the disruption in your child’s life will go a long way to helping them cope with the disruption that is swirling around them as you manage your own life changes.

4. Set a positive tone.

It can be tempting to vent to your child or explain to them how unfair or mean the other parent was that made the divorce unavoidable. However, when you speak negatively about your child’s other parent, it can be very confusing for them. It can also undermine their parenting credibility, which ultimately only hurts your child and makes your co-parenting less effective. Remember, despite whatever led you to choose divorce, you and your ex should still have one common goal: a happy and successful life for your child. In this endeavor, it is important to attempt to be respectful of one another whenever possible.

5. Seek professional help.

It is normal for you and your child to struggle as you adapt to this major change in your lives. Fortunately, you do not have to handle it on your own. There are many resources available that can help you process your thoughts and feelings and build a happier, more secure life for yourself and your child. Sometimes your child may need guidance or support from a mental health professional that would provide them with a neutral, confidential, safe space to learn how to better cope with their thoughts and feelings.

Contact Whitson Law

If your child is having a difficult time coping with your divorce, or if you are facing other challenges through the divorce process and its aftermath, the Whitson Law team is here to help. Contact us today!

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WhitsonLaw, PLLC

WhitsonLaw can assist you with divorce, mediation, custody, child support, protective orders, adoption and more.

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